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Some of these differences should help demonstrate which one is the the true and faithful church. After the death and resurrection of Jesus, our doctrines, practices, policies and traditions have their roots in the original Jerusalem church (Acts 2, c. D.), as well as through the faithful in Antioch & Asia Minor in the first (such as the Apostles Peter, Paul, and John) and second centuries A. (such leaders as Polycarp, Thaseas, Serapion, and Polycrates). Commandment 8 "For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts...thefts... But I say to you, do not swear at all" (Matthew -34). Commandment 10 "Do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on" (Matthew ). These are the things which defile a man" (Matthew -20). All these evil things come from within and defile a man" (Mark -23). Notice that even into the 21st century, the Church of God has retained the order of the ten commandments that was even recognized by Catholic-accepted leaders such as Clement of Alexandria and Origen (both of whom were praised by Pope Benedict XVI in 2007). Thus, Jesus Christ declares (Matthew ): "And whosoever shall speak a word against the Son of man, it shall be forgiven him: but he that shall speak against the Holy Ghost, it shall not be forgiven him, neither in this world, nor in the world to come"... If a man depart this life with lighter faults, he is condemned to fire which burns away the lighter materials, and prepares the soul for the kingdom of God, where nothing defiled may enter. Now the COG does not teach limbo or purgatory per se (see below), yet both the Roman Catholics and the COG believe that God does have a plan for those that are not incorrigibly wicked, other than eternal torment. And to this day neither has it right — because they forsook the instructions of Christ and His apostles (Mc Nair C. For more information on them, see also Is Lent a Christian Holiday? The doctrine of the Catholic Church concerning the Holy Ghost forms an integral part of her teaching on the mystery of the Holy Trinity, of which St. While corroborating and explaining the testimony of Scripture, (Forget J. This, sadly, will be part of the reason that Jesus' prophecy in Matthew will be fulfilled: An article of tremendous related interest may be Catholic Prophecies: Will You Stand By the Truth or Be Deceived? There is no doubt that this turn of events did much towards weaning the Christians from the old millenarianism (Kirsch J. Amongst these he says that there will be a millennium after the resurrection from the dead, when the personal reign of Christ will be established on this earth (Fragments of Papias, VI).
According to Catholic teaching any Christians who, banded together refuse to accept the entire doctrine or to acknowledge the supreme authority of the Catholic Church, constitute merely a religious party under human unauthorized leadership. So after the death of the historical apostles they had to co–opt others who took over some of their apostolic functions. John in the Apocalypse (i, II; ii, 8-11) has only words of praise…There were other Christians in the vicinity of the city and dependent on it to whom St. "And He said to them, 'The Sabbath was made for man, and not man for the Sabbath. But I say to you that whoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment" (Matthew -22). But I say to you that whoever looks at a woman to lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart" (Matthew -28). Before full restoration they will suffer punishment, but that punishment is intended to be educative, to purge them from the imperfections brought by their sin. Death, the last enemy, shall be destroyed, the body shall be made spiritual, the world of matter shall be transformed, and there shall be, in the universe, only peace and unity... The Last Great Day helps picture that all who ever lived will have an opportunity for salvation–an opportunity most will accept (John -39; Romans -26; Ezekiel -14; Hebrews -28). Notice that Priest Bagatti admits that the original "Eucharist" was not like the one that is now used by his church: , in imitation of the Supper of the Lord. The connection between the Jewish and the Christian Pasch explains the movable character of this feast. They assume it was "Christianized by Jesus’ resurrection." But does it matter? New Babylon, dance, bounce and leap greatly, make known even those in Haydes what a Grace you have received. Holy and full of gentleness, he shall undo all wrong, he shall recover the states of the Church, and reunite the exiled temporal powers. We have perceived, moreover, that the expression, 'The day of the Lord is as a thousand years,' is connected with this subject. From Fragments from Commentaries on Various Books of Scripture. Notice therefore that "the most important theologian and the most prolific religious writer of the Roman Church in the pre-Constantinian era" taught the 6,000 year plan followed by a thousand year kingdom that lasts one thousand years. Blessed and holy is he that has part in the first resurrection: on such the second death has no power; but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with Him a thousand years." Those who, on the strength of this passage, have suspected that the first resurrection is future and bodily, have been moved, among other things, specially by the number of a thousand years, as if it were a fit thing that the saints should thus enjoy a kind of Sabbath-rest during that period, a holy leisure after the labors of the six thousand years since man was created, and was on account of his great sin dismissed from the blessedness of paradise into the woes of this mortal life, so that thus, as it is written, "One day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day," there should follow on the completion of six thousand years, as of six days, a kind of seventh-day Sabbath in the succeeding thousand years; and that it is for this purpose the saints rise, viz., to celebrate this Sabbath. This was not a belief originally held by early Roman Catholic recognized leaders/saints. The Apostle John died in Ephesus at the end of the first century. It is a “little flock” (Luke ), but God has always remained true to His promise that “the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it” (Matthew )..true Church of God... According to the various spokesmen, the Fathers stressed in their interventions the defense of Catholic Doctrine, stating that “the Church has no authority or power to change the Word of God.” (Garcia RL. The word Catholic (katholikos from katholou -- throughout the whole, i.e., universal) occurs in the Greek classics, e.g., in Aristotle and Polybius, and was freely used by the earlier Christian writers in what we may call its primitive and non-ecclesiastical sense. Since the true Church of God has continued from the time of the original apostles, the name Twelve times in the New Testament (Acts ; 1 Corinthians 1:2; ; ,22; ;15:9; 2 Corinthians 1:1; Galatians ; 1 Thessalonians ; 2 Thessalonians 1:4; 1 Timothy 3:5,15), as well as throughout Christian history, the true church has used a version of the expression "Church of God" though often with another word, like a city or the word "living". ..find the Churches governed by a hierarchical organization of bishops, sometimes also termed presbyters, and deacons. Essentially Peter was the first among equals (the apostles). Thus while both groups consider that John was a faithful leader, the COG traces its leadership history through the Apostle John after the deaths of Peter and Paul, while the Roman Catholics prefer to believe that a non-apostle named Linus was the leader after Peter and Paul died (though several of their earliest historical source differ and claim Clement, and not Linus). The other lay in their willingness to endure persecution and even death in order to remain faithful to God (Revelation 2:9–10) (Ogwyn J. We in COG, of course, believe that it is only one, the one that considers the Smyrnaeans as their ancestors, that could be the true church today. But if, Trypho, some of your race, who say they believe in this Christ, compel those Gentiles who believe in this Christ to live in all respects according to the law given by Moses, or choose not to associate so intimately with them, I in like manner do not approve of them (Justin. The use of these two expressions ("day of the preparation" and "the day of the great Sabbath") demonstrate that the Smyrnaeans were still keeping the Sabbath in the latter portion of the 2nd century (otherwise other terms would have been more appropriate--non-Sabbath observers do not call the day before Saturday "the day of preparation"). One is epistrepho, which means "to convert, to change, to turn to or against" (Theological Dictionary of the New Testament, p. The other is metanoia, which literally means a "change of mind." Real repentance is not simply a feeling or an emotion, nor a mere act of contrition or atonement. Before we can repent, we must know what sin actually is, and we must be absolutely convinced that God is right and that we are wrong. The great spiritual law (Romans ) summed up in the Ten Commandments! The Church, on the other hand, after changing the day of rest from the Jewish Sabbath, or seventh day of the week, to the first, made the Third Commandment refer to Sunday as the day to be kept holy as the Lord's Day. The system of numeration found in Catholic Bibles, based on the Hebrew text, was made by St. (Statement of Beliefs of the Continuing Church of God, accessed 09/04/13) Commandment 1 "You shall worship the LORD your God, and Him only you shall serve" (Matthew ). 1098) states that the so-called "Apostolici" denied purgatory and the utility of prayers for the departed (Hanna Edward J. He robs the Saviour of his merits, and the sufficiency of his grace in justification, regeneration, remission of sins, sanctification, establishment in the faith, and spiritual nourishment; ascribing all these things to his own authority, to a form of words, to his own *works, to the intercession of saints, and to the fire of purgatory. Original from Harvard University, Digitized, Feb 6, 2009, pp. Jesus taught that it was very hard “for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God” (Mark ). It was natural then that in this atmosphere we should find a continually developing veneration for the sanctity and exalted privileges of Mary... Electronic version copyright © 1997 by New Advent, Inc). The Gothic letters for the name of Jesus, "IHS," were set in a blazing sun to whose tongues of fire and spreading rays he attributed mystical significance. 24 And giving thanks, broke, and said: Take ye, and eat: this is my body, which shall be delivered for you: this do for the commemoration of me. Throughout history, our critics have called us a variety of names (including Semi-Arians) and have often defined us in ways that are inaccurate.(Irenaeus. But notice what these verses in Peter's letter really say. 1973) The Church of God does not teach that Jesus descended into Hades after the crucifixion. For in Zechariah, one of the twelve prophets, it is thus written: "These are the two olive trees and two candlesticks which stand in the presence of the Lord of the earth;" that is, they are in paradise. Behind the Work Video Sermon, Feast of Tabernacles 1983). 69–155AD) had been a personal disciple of the Apostle John and was one of the few church leaders of his day to hold fast to the Truth... Representing the synod fathers were Archbishop Carlos Aguiar Retes, of Tlalnepantla, Mexico, and Archbishop Stanislaw Gadecki, president of the Polish Episcopal Conference. Jesus said that Christians would be kept in His Father’s name (John ), which most often is simply “God” in the New Testament, hence “Church of God.” The most faithful Church of God in the end times in the Book of Revelation is the Philadelphian one, but since only a remnant of that is left, the term Philadelphia remnant Church of God is an appropriate description of the portion of the Church of God that holds fast to Philadelphia era teachings. All Catholic scholars, together with some few Protestants, hold that they did so. Originally published in Worldwide News article 2/19/78 and quoted in the LCN. Church of God also specifically traces its history from the original apostles like Peter, Paul, and John through through their faithful descendants like Polycarp, Polycrates, and certain other known early leaders/bishops in Asia Minor until the early third century, certain known leaders/bishops until around 135 A. And in general, during his lifetime, Peter seemed to be the top leader of a widely geographically separated Christian church. Does your church The Church of God considers that while Peter was also a faithful apostle, that after Peter's death, John (the last of the original apostles to die) became the primary leader--it was the Apostle John that was Peter's immediate successor-- Peter was not followed by a succession of presbyters in Rome to rule all Christendom (which many Roman Catholic scholars understand). For they who are greater than I, have said, ‘We ought to obey God rather than men’" (Eusebius, xxiv)... One was their ability to distinguish between the continuation of the true Church of God and what was, in reality, the emerging Synagogue of Satan. It may be of interest to note that Tertullian claimed that only two churches, the Roman one and the Smyrnaean one, could truly have any apostolic claim. On the Sabbath-day all worldly labors ought to be abstained from..yourselves up to spiritual exercises, repairing to church, attending to sacred reading and instruction..is the observance of the Christian Sabbath (Translated from Origen's Opera 2, Paris, 1733, Andrews J. But the next Sabbath the whole city almost assembled to hear the word of God (Acts ,42-44). It is interesting to note that Trypho expected that Justin would have kept the Sabbath--this is because that was the common practice of those that professed Christ in Asia Minor. The Hebrew term generally used in the Old Testament is shub, which means "to turn." In its meaning, the word goes "beyond contrition and sorrow to a conscious decision of turning to God" (Theological Wordbook of the Old Testament, p. In the New Testament there are two Greek words used to describe repentance. They are found twice recorded in the Pentateuch, in Exodus 20 and Deuteronomy 5... xix) condemns those who deny that the Ten Commandments are binding on Christians... The Ten Commandments were observed by the apostolic and true post-apostolic Christians–and in the order that the Church of God claims they are in. The sacrament of the eucharist is converted into an object of adoration, and the worshipping of God alone is prohibited. The earliest unmistakable examples of the "worship" -- we use the word of course in the relative sense -- of the saints is connected with the veneration paid to the martyrs who gave their lives for the Faith...though writers like Tertullian, Hevidius, and possibly Hegesippus disputed the perpetual virginity of Mary, their more orthodox contemporaries affirmed it. The view most widely held today among upholders of the historico-religious theory is that the Eucharist and the Mass originated in the practices of the Persian Mithraism (Dieterich, H. Tertullian in anger ascribed this mimicking of Christian rites to the "devil" and observed in astonishment (De prescript haeret, C. The Church of God simply did not change its services as dramatically as those of the Roman Church have--our are consistent with the practices of the original church (see What was the Liturgy of the Early Church? Eucharist/Lord's Passover For neither could Anicetus persuade Polycarp to forego the observance [in his own way], inasmuch as these things had been always observed by John the disciple of our Lord, and by other apostles with whom he had been conversant; nor, on the other hand, could Polycarp succeed in persuading Anicetus to keep [the observance in his way], for he maintained that he was bound to adhere to the usage of the presbyters who preceded him. Excerpted from Volume I of The Ante-Nicene Fathers (Alexander Roberts and James Donaldson, editors); American Edition copyright © 1885. After the Communion of the laity under the species of wine had been abolished, the deacon's powers were more and more restricted (Pohle J. John Capistrano, a symbol representing the Holy Name. And the bread, which we break, is it not the partaking of the body of the Lord? 23 For I have received of the Lord that which also I delivered unto you, that the Lord Jesus, the same night in which he was betrayed, took bread. Historically, pneumatomachians were those who did not accept that the Holy Spirit was a separate person--this is something that those in the COG would agree with. Hippolytus (somewhat diversely in the "Contra Noetum" and in the "Philosophumena," if they are both his) taught the same division of the Son from the Father as traditional, and he records that Pope Callistus condemned him as a Ditheist (Chapman J. And consequently, when once grace had been revealed, all were bound to explicit faith in the mystery of the Trinity (The Summa Theologica of St. "By which also he went and preached unto the SPIRITS IN PRISON"! Certainly not MEN — nor the "souls" of men, since MEN DO NOT HAVE immortal souls! "For if God spared not the angels (spirits) that SINNED, but cast them down to hell (PRISON — "hell" is a mistranslation from the Greek "tartaroo" which means a "condition or position of RESTRAINT," as an "imprisonment"), and delivered them into CHAINS of darkness, to be reserved unto judgment." The "spirits in prison" are the sinning angels, or the DEMONS that have perverted their ways and followed Satan, and are BOUND to the earth — imprisoned here by the power of God until their day of JUDGMENT. Some have seized upon I Peter -20 as supposed proof that Jesus was alive when He was dead — that He preached to spirits in prison during the three days and three nights in which He was in the grave asleep in death! Heads of the Canons of Abulides or Hippolytus, Which Are Used by the Ethiopian Christians. "These are the two candlesticks standing before the Lord of the earth." These two candlesticks and two olive trees He has to this end spoken of, and admonished you that if, when you have read of them elsewhere, you have not understood, you may understand here. Approximate Quotes from: A History of the Church of God--The Transition from Sardis to the Philadelphia Era. GUARDING THE DEPOSIT OF FAITH IS THE MISSION WHICH THE LORD ENTRUSTED TO HIS CHURCH, and which she fulfills in every age. At the press conference, along with Jesuit Father Federico Lombardi, director of the Holy See Press Office, were the spokesmen of the different languages: in Spanish, Father Manuel Dorantes; in Italian, Father Bernard Hagenkord; in English, Father Thomas Rosica; and in French, Romilda Ferrauto. Polycarp and the presbyters with him to the church of God that sojourns at Philippi (Polycarp. 1 Corinthians 1:2) or another word, with it (1 Timothy ). The question at issue is, whether the Apostles did, or did not, establish in the Christian communities a hierarchical organization. The evidence thus far considered seems to demonstrate beyond all question that the hierarchical organization of the Church was, in its essential elements, the work of the Apostles themselves; and that to this hierarchy they handed on the charge entrusted to them by Christ of governing the Kingdom of God, and of teaching the revealed doctrine. I have tried to take space to MAKE IT CLEAR in this article (Armstrong, Herbert W. He was the Apostle to Israel while Paul was the Apostle to the Gentiles (Galatians 2:9). )—a bishop is essentially an elder who is a pastor or overseer (compare Acts 20 vss. John specifically taught what he learned from the beginning and the Bible is clear that John taught the truth of Christianity from the beginning (1 John 1:1-3; 2:3-4). I, therefore, brethren, am now 65 years in the Lord, who having conferred with the brethren throughout the world, and having studied the whole of the sacred Scriptures, am not at all alarmed at those things with which I am threatened, to intimidate me. (Hebrews 4:3-6,9-11, NJB) But what is the feast of the Sabbath except that which the apostle speaks, "There remaineth therefore a Sabbatism," that is, the observance of the Sabbath, by the people of God..us see how the Sabbath ought to be observed by a Christian. And when the synagogue was dismissed, many of the Jews, and of the strangers serving God, followed Paul and Barnabas: who speaking exhorted them to continue in the grace of God. While the Ephesians were told to live differently than the other Gentiles in whose nation they co-existed with, those with Justin Martyr could not be distinguished. There are several words rendered "repent" in the Bible. The Ten Commandments are precepts bearing on the fundamental obligations of religion and morality and embodying the revealed expression of the Creator's will in relation to man's whole duty to God and to his fellow-creatures. And this is prophesied to continue into the future, as the Apostle John was inspired to write,“the saints; here are those who keep the commandments of God and the faith of Jesus” (Revelation )... The worship that belongs alone to God he transfers to Antichrist himself—to the creature, male and female, deceased—to images, carcasses, and relics. Seeing that this doctrine is not contained, at least explicitly in the earlier forms of the Apostles' Creed, there is perhaps no ground for surprise if we do not meet with any clear traces of the cultus of the Blessed Virgin in the first Christian centuries. In truth, the Eucharist performs at once two functions: that of a sacrament and that of a sacrifice... "In the Mandaean mass" writes Cumont ("Mysterien des Mithra", Leipzig, 1903, p.118), "the celebrant consecrated bread and water, which he mixed with perfumed Haoma-juice, and ate this food while performing the functions of divine service". Since Jesus was only to be sacrificed once, the idea of a daily or weekly 'sacrifice of the mass' is opposed to the Bible and the original faith. Translated by Alexander Roberts and James Donaldson. In St, Thomas' time (III:82:3), the deacons were allowed to administer only the Chalice to the laity, and in case of necessity the Sacred Host also, at the bidding of the bishop or priest. He is especially remembered for his zeal..he popularized, with the help of St. Hannan, Archbishop of New Orleans, November 19, 1974. 26 And whilst they were at supper, Jesus took bread, and blessed, and broke: and gave to his disciples, and said: Take ye, and eat. (Matthew ,26 Douay-Rheims) 22 And whilst they were eating, Jesus took bread; and blessing, broke, and gave to them, and said: Take ye. (Mark , Douay-Rheims) 19 And taking bread, he gave thanks, and brake; and gave to them, saying: This is my body, which is given for you. (Luke , Douay-Rheims) 16 The chalice of benediction, which we bless, is it not the communion of the blood of Christ ? (Statement of Beliefs of the Continuing Church of God, accessed 09/04/13) Notice that even though they believe the Holy Spirit is a separate person, the Roman Catholics admit that comments in scripture about "Spirit" have different meanings/applications. Hippolytus of Rome, The Catholic Encyclopedia, 1910). Wherefore just as, before Christ, the mystery of Christ was believed explicitly by the learned, but implicitly and under a veil, so to speak, by the simple, so too was it with the mystery of the Trinity. Literally translated by Fathers of the English Dominican Province. 40 For as Jonas was in the whale's belly three days and three nights: so shall the Son of man be in the heart of the earth three days and three nights. But notice to WHOM Christ witnessed about the flood. 1973) When Did Jesus Preach to the Spirits in Prison? That it is not meet for Christians to bear arms (Hippolytus. But to the unbelieving and despisers, who obey not the truth, but are obedient to unrighteousness, when they shall have been filled with adulteries and fornications, and filthiness, and covetousness, and unlawful idolatries, there shall be anger and wrath, tribulation and anguish, and at the last everlasting fire shall possess such men (Theophilus of Antioch. For even the very word spoken to him testifies to him, saying, "Before I formed you in the belly I knew you; and before you came forth out of the womb I sanctified you, and I ordained you a prophet unto the nations." But he was not a prophet unto the nations; and thus the truthful word of God makes it necessary, which it has promised to set forth, that he should be a prophet to the nations. The Church of God and sometimes with a location or another word associated with it (Armstrong HW. Many, in fact, addressed the situation of the divorced that have remarried civilly and wish to access Communion. I write so that you may know how you ought to conduct yourself in the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth (1 Timothy , NKJV). The Apostolic Fathers--Greek Text and English Translations, 3rd printing 2004. Romans ) though often with another term, like a geographic region (cf. The Church Should Have a Hierarchical Governance Both the Roman Catholic Church and the Church of God believe in hierarchical governance. For a bishop must be without crime." These presbyters form a corporate body (1 Timothy ), and they are entrusted with the twofold charge of governing the Church (1 Timothy 3:5) and of teaching (1 Timothy 3:2; Titus 1:9)... This crucial crux chapter has been misunderstood, twisted and distorted. Peter, along with the Apostle John, played a prominent role in the early Christian church. This is especially true since none of those early “Bishops of Rome” claim to have held the position of apostle (or even bishop! For in Asia great lights have fallen asleep, which shall rise again in the day of the Lord’s appearing, in which he will come with glory from heaven, and will raise up all the saints; Philip, one of the twelve apostles, who sleeps in Hierapolis… and my relatives always observed the day when the people threw away the leaven [Abib 14]. That Whitsunday belongs to the Apostolic times is stated in the seventh of the (interpolated) fragments attributed to St. In Tertullian (De bapt., xix) the festival appears as already well established (Holweck F. 11 Let us, then, press forward to enter this place of rest, or some of you might copy this example of refusal to believe and be lost. And they going forth, they desired them that the Sabbath following they would speak unto them these words. Electronic version copyright © 1997 by New Advent, Inc. If real repentance is not equated with remorse, regret or even acts of penance, then what is it? deka, ten, and logos, a word), the Ten Words of Sayings, the latter name generally applied by the Greek Fathers. In New Testament times and throughout history, true Christians have stiven to obey the law of God, including keeping the Ten Commandments. Christ never had an enemy like this; so able to pervert the way of truth into falsehood, insomuch that the true church, with her children, is trodden under foot. Devotion to Our Blessed Lady in its ultimate analysis must be regarded as a practical application of the doctrine of the Communion of Saints. In the early part of the first century, it is unlikely that the Occasionally a collection would be taken for the poor at the end. By the end of the first century, the standard Christian liturgical observations would be as follows. The simple fact that numerous heretics...repudiated the Mass as "idolatry", while retaining the Sacrament of the true Body and Blood of Christ, proves that the Sacrament of the Eucharist is something essentially different from the Sacrifice of the Mass. No prayers to dead saints (including Mary) are offered in COG services, and Passover is an annual event. The ancient Hydroparastatæ, or Aquarians, who used water instead of wine, were heretics in her eyes... Towards the close of the Middle Ages IHS became a symbol , quite like the SAINT BERNADINE OF SIENA 1380-1444... 19 And the disciples did as Jesus appointed to them, and they prepared the pasch. The Holy Spirit is inherent in the Father and the Son, and emanates from Them throughout the entire universe (1 Kings ; Psalm 139:7; Jeremiah ). Hippolytus was the most important theologian and the most prolific religious writer of the Roman Church in the pre-Constantinian era (St. The Panarion of Epiphanius of Salamis, Books II and III (Sects 47-80), It is impossible to believe explicitly in the mystery of Christ, without faith in the Trinity... A booklet of related interest may be Should You Observe God's Holy Days or Demonic Holidays? Leaders of both groups in modern times realize that the idea of Jesus' descent into Hades to preach to dead humans after the crucifixion is not from the Bible. doctrine appears to be unknown in the New Testament. 15:3 and 20) but "WHEN once the long-suffering of God waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was a preparing ..." (I Peter ). Yet these also have spoken beforehand of the punishments that are to light upon the profane and unbelieving, in order that none be left without a witness, or be able to say, "We have not heard, neither have we known." But do you also, if you please, give reverential attention to the prophetic Scriptures, and they will make your way plainer for escaping the eternal punishments, and obtaining the eternal prizes of God... Many think that there is Elisha, or Moses, with Elijah; but both of these died; while the death of Elijah is not heard of, with whom all our ancients have believed that it was Jeremiah.